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Old 25-03-2013, 19:57   #1
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Shaft stuffing box not dripping

Another question for forum members. The propeller shaft stuffing box on my new-to-me Hood 38 is a traditional design, fitted to the boat with a short hose. No grease fittings, no bleed valves or vent, no fancy bellows. But the stuffing box does not drip. I backed off the two packing adjustment screws, and still no drip. In fact, the adjustment screws just loosened up, and the packing fitting did not back out, even when I pulled on it.
So, there is no apparent water flow to lubricate the shaft. Yet the shaft and box are always cool to the touch after running. Has anyone seen this before. If it's cool, am I okay? If it's not dripping, am I destroying my shaft?
Have you seen this before?
Thanks for any guidance.
Tom
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Old 25-03-2013, 20:08   #2
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Re: Shaft stuffing box not dripping

If its cool, you're good to go. Someone may have packed it with teflon packing so you don't have to put up with the drip.
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Old 25-03-2013, 20:17   #3
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Re: Shaft stuffing box not dripping

My father set up a conventional stuffing box with standard packing during Panope's original build. It did not drip for the first several years of frequent motoring. Never got hot. Same packing was fine when I removed it after 18 years of frequent use.

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Old 25-03-2013, 20:23   #4
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Re: Shaft stuffing box not dripping

Adjustment screws? On a traditional stuffing box? This is what a traditional stuffing box looks like.
Re-Packing A Traditional Stuffing Box Photo Gallery by Compass Marine at pbase.com
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Old 26-03-2013, 17:29   #5
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Re: Shaft stuffing box not dripping

Thanks Don and Steve for the info. I'll stop worring now each time I turn on the engine.
Deepfrz, I think your photos represent an advancement from my stuffing box. Instead of a single nut for adjusting compression, mine has 2 nuts, 180 deg apart on opposite sides of the shaft, to pull in the compression fitting. But basically, the same technology.
Thanks again
\Tom
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Old 26-03-2013, 20:20   #6
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Re: Shaft stuffing box not dripping

I can think of 7 different types of stuffing boxes but I can neither understand nor picture one of your description. I'd love to see a photo.
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Old 26-03-2013, 20:27   #7
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Re: Shaft stuffing box not dripping

Ah, okay, now I get it. It was the adjustment "screw" wording that threw me off. Sorry. Yours is like this I take it. Good luck.
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I would still try to get things loosened up though. The two pieces must be rusted together?
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Old 26-03-2013, 20:27   #8
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Re: Shaft stuffing box not dripping

BoatPoker,

I think he's talking about something like this:



Two bolts/studs are used to draw in the compression collar rather than having a threaded nut as the compression collar.

Our traditional style hasn't dripped for 30+ years, but has never been a problem.
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Old 26-03-2013, 20:40   #9
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Re: Shaft stuffing box not dripping

The stuffing box you describe, is very common, most times in larger craft. It's manner of working it's just the same as DeepFrz has said about the first one he showed above, the only difference is there are 2 adjustment places instead of one. For me if it's running cool I would make sure the unit was a little loose and let it go till it breaks in and starts to drip some water, then you can adjust it to a semi-slow drip. Hope this helps ! This type has worked on at least 8 boats Ive owned, mostly power boats, but even my new to me boat has this style stuffing box.
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